In the US in 2015 drug overdose deaths rose to 16.3 per 100,000, against 6.1 per 100,000 people in 1999.
Opioids – including prescription opioids and heroin – killed more than 33,000 people in 2015, more than any year on record. Since 1999, the amount of prescription opioids – stuff like oxycodone, hydrocodone, and methadone – sold in the US has nearly quadrupled.
The baby boomer generation particularly likes synthetic opioids. Drug overdose deaths from synthetic opioids in the 55-to-64 age group had the biggest increase; it’s gone up 5 times from the 1999 level.
The four states with the highest overdose death rates were West Virginia (41.5 per 100,000); New Hampshire (34.3); Kentucky (29.9); and Ohio (29.9). Another 17 other states had statistically higher rates than the national rate of 16.3 per 100,000.
Picture source: Z Yance